Updated: Sep 21
Inspiring Artists Stories
Today we'd like to introduce you to Lillian Buonocore.
Current Location: Longmont, CO
Lillian, before we jump into it, why don't you tell us a little about your story.
When I was 6 years old, my amazing Mom took me to audition for The Sound of Music. I sang a very loud rendition of "You're Never Fully Dressed Without A Smile" and somehow landed the role of Gretl. Little did I know at the time that future 22-year-old me would still be performing, and doing it for a living! Between then and now, I have performed and moved all over the country, graduated from high school and college, and am now making a living performing in Colorado. The Academy for the Performing Arts (APA), the University of Northern Colorado (UNC), and all the teachers & professors I have had along the way, are the reason why I have the tools, the passion, and the drive to pursue this challenging career path.
Overall, has it been a rather smooth road? If not, what are some of the struggles you've experienced along the way?
The journey has not been easy, but I honestly wouldn't change a thing. I spent my first few years at both APA and UNC receiving quite a bit of rejection and criticism from directors and teachers. I thought I fell short at auditions and callbacks, and would probably never be given the same opportunities as some of my peers. The best advice I received from a fellow actor was to create my own opportunities. Once I realized that my future and opportunities were actually in MY hands, I decided it was time to seek out my own opportunities, work hard to improve my skills, and stop letting others decide my worth. If I had waited around and expected good things to happen to me, I would not have had many of the invaluable experiences I have had today.
Can you tell us about what you are currently working on? Anything you have been focused on during this time of quarantine?
Before the pandemic, I was working at BDT Stage, a wonderful dinner theatre in Boulder, Colorado. I performed Ragtime for about a week as Evelyn Nesbit before it unfortunately closed due to COVID-19. BDT Stage is my family, which is why I am hoping to return in the near future when the opportunity presents itself. My most recent pandemic project was Les Misérables in Quaran-Stream where I spent a little over a month recording the role of Eponine from my parents home in Northern California. If you would like to watch, you can search for the "Creative Quarantine" channel on YouTube! Since I have been back in Colorado, I have been working on developing a business as a local dog walker, as well as an online business as an audition coach for high schoolers and other young performers. Feel free to email me if you, or anyone you know, is interested! I also spend a lot of my time practicing yoga and intend to get my Yoga Teacher Training certification before the end of the year.
Do you have an early childhood memory that you fondly remember?
My favorite semi-childhood memory is traveling to visit all the different colleges I was auditioning for, with my Dad. He was so patient, helpful and supportive during every trip. I couldn't have done it without him and I don't think I can ever thank him enough for doing so much for me during that time.
What has been the proudest moment of your career so far?
The proudest moment of my career was when I was asked to return to a theatre because of my talent, work ethic, and most importantly, because they enjoyed working with me. Knowing that I was receiving a job because of who I am as a human, beyond my talent, was the greatest gift someone could have given me.
The upcoming Virtual Revue you are performing in is titled TOGETHER. What role do you think the arts has played in unifying people?
Unity, to me, means coming together through teamwork and collaboration in order to achieve something important. I believe the arts bring people together because they allow people to feel seen and heard. Art shows us that we are not alone in our feelings, struggles, hopes, and dreams. We are all human, and not as different from each other as we may think.
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